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BLOGS ABOUT CANCER, WAYS TO HELP AND MORE

The Best Foods For Children To Eat That Are Undergoing Chemotherapy

on October 24, 2017


Eating well is essential for children who are undergoing chemotherapy after a cancer diagnosis. By eating right, a child can feel better during treatment as well as deal with the side effects that coincide with chemotherapy. Children can lose their strength and feel weak as chemo is administered. With a healthy diet, the body remains strong which helps the child deal with side effects of chemotherapy.


Nutritional Needs


Every child is different, so their nutritional needs will vary depending on the individual, the cancer diagnosis, treatment type, etc. It is recommended that parents consult a nutritionist once chemo treatments begin to determine what will be best for the child as far as foods are concerned. For the most part, children will need to see an increase in healthy fats, carbohydrates and protein to their diet to stay strong during treatments, handling the many side effects of chemotherapy.


Foods with Protein


The body is able to grow, repair tissue and help the immune system when proteins are included in a healthy diet. A child that is undergoing chemotherapy treatment will need to get enough protein due to the radiation associated with the chemo treatments. The protein will help to build blood cells, boost the immune system and more, helping the child to prevent infections and deal with the overall side effects of the treatments used for cancer. Protein can be added to the diet in a variety of ways including poultry and fish, yogurt, milk, eggs, cheese, nuts, and soy. Consider adding chicken or fish to one meal a day along with peanut butter for snacks, eggs for breakfast, etc. Adding protein is essential to a healthy diet for your child during chemo treatments.


Adding Fats


When planning a diet for chemo treatments, your child needs to add in healthy fats. With fats, the body is able to store energy as well as carry vitamins within the bloodstream. A child that may be losing weight during treatment can benefit from fats in the diet as they are dense in calories. Unsaturated fats are the best option for your child and can be found in nuts, avocados, fish and olive oil. Find simple ways to add in healthy unsaturated fats to your child’s diet for a stronger body during chemo treatment.


Carbohydrates


To provide energy for the body and help the organs to maintain function, carbohydrates are needed. Your child will need to be ingesting plenty of carbs to ensure the child feels full and is able to prevent constipation. Fiber can be found in carb-rich foods like whole-grain bread and pasta which can help to prevent constipation, a common side effect that takes place during cancer treatment. Additional carbohydrates can be added to the body with rice, fruits, beans, cereals, pasta, bread and more.
While your child needs to have a healthy food diet, they must also stay hydrated. During cancer treatment, the body can lose a great deal of water due to diarrhea, vomiting or not feel well enough to drink the appropriate amount of water. Dehydration can occur so you must ensure that your child is getting enough fluids in the body. Drinking water and juice is a must but water can also be derived from other sources such as soups.